The Ice House

Within the Church of St Mary Magdalene shrubbery, the ice house that served Croome Court can be found. The ice house became overgrown and filled with rubble when it ceased to be used in 1915.

The thatched roof was partly a decorative touch to make the building blend in with its surroundings but it also fulfilled a practical function of keeping it cool. More than two thirds of the building is below ground. The depth of the Ice House is 24 feet which is a surprising drop. The Ice House worked rather like a thermos flask. The walls are double-skinned, and ice would have been taken from a nearby pond in winter and packed into the chamber, which was lined with straw for extra insulation. Throughout the summer the ice from the Ice House would have been used to preserve food and cool drinks as well as to create ice creams and sorbets.*

*From the National Trust Croome Handbook

12 Comments CherryPie on Aug 3rd 2017

12 Responses to “The Ice House – Croome Park”

  1. The Yum List says:

    I like the roof and its dual purpose.

  2. Hels says:

    Decades ago my maternal family lived in Russia where fresh food was either frozen in the snow in winter or pickled and preserved in summer. It was a primitive system, I suppose, and not nearly as sophisticated as the ice house seen here. Not only was the ice house architecturally more attractive, but safer (from animal or human thieves) as well.

    I remember when my parents bought their first proper fridge in the 1950s… an amazing day!

    • CherryPie says:

      It is interesting to hear about your family history and the food preservation.

      Your mention of the first proper fridge that your parents had reminds of the big black and white telly that my family had when I was young. It was big and square with two large dials to operate it. How technology has moved on from that!!

  3. Ginnie says:

    I bet little gnomes live there now. :D

  4. It’s nice that you’ve focused on this particular feature. And interesting. I bet the peasants enjoyed the ice creams and sorbets :-)

    • CherryPie says:

      The structure took me by surprise as I walked away from the church underneath the trees and out of the rain ;-)

      HaHa I like the thought of ice creams and sorbets :-)

  5. james higham says:

    An aside – because the print is so small, ‘rubble’ appeared to be ‘nubiles’. Thought to myself – what’s Cherie getting at here?

  6. Amfortas says:

    A garden hermit could have turned it into a fine two or three storey home.